U.S. elections have been upended by the coronavirus pandemic. At least 13 states have postponed voting and more delays are possible as health officials warn that social distancing and other measures to contain the virus might be in place for weeks, if not months.
The states that have yet to hold their primaries find themselves in a seemingly impossible situation as they look to balance public health concerns with the need to hold elections. While election officials routinely prepare for natural disasters such as hurricanes and wildfires, the virus outbreak poses a unique challenge.
The states that have opted to press ahead have found themselves dealing with what one Chicago elections official called a “tsunami” of cancellations by poll workers, who tend to be older, and a last-minute scramble to relocate polling places away from nursing homes and senior living communities.
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